For the second year in a row, Marin has brought its A-game to the masses. Bikes like the B-17, Hawk Hill and San Quentin proved that there are still modern, affordable, rideable bikes on bike-store shelves. This year, the northern California legacy brand proved it’s not slowing down. Three highlights of high-value, in-vogue bikes caught our eye at this year’s Eurobike.
Hawk Hill 1
The high-end customer takes through-axles, 1x drivetrains, and up-to-date geometry for granted. But each of those modern touches costs money. Yes, even up-to-date geometry costs money. Redesigning a frame every two-to-three years isn’t as easy as letting it ride for four or five. As head angles slackened, seat angles became steeper, and reach measurements grew longer, the budget-oriented Hawk Hill could have understandably sat it out for a couple more years. But for 2019, it got a degree-slacker head angle, degree-steeper seat angle and a 15-millimeter-longer reach. That gave it a 65.5-degree head angle, 74.3-degree seat angle, and 465-millimeter reach on its Large size. All with an 11-42 1x drivetrain, 29-millimeter inner-width rims and metric rear shock. But no dropper post. For $1,600, that’s up to you.
Alpine Trail 7
The Alpine Trail lineup replaces the Attack Trail. It’s a 150-millimeter rear-, 160-millimeter front-travel, 29-inch-wheeled aluminum beast that offers more than any bike its price point should. The $2,750 Alpine Trail 7 leaves behind the Attack Trail’s modified Quadlink design for a traditional four-bar setup. It attaches that linkage to a metric X-Fusion O2 Pro RXC that benefits from the now-expired patent on Fox’s air-pressure-equalizing transfer port. Up front, there’s a Yari RC with a traditional 51-millimeter offset. It rolls on e*thirteen’s 9-46 11-speed cassette, controlled by an SLX derailleur. Or, if your ideal budget bike is a little higher-budget, there’s the Alpine Trail 8 with with a Fox 36 Performance, DPx2 shock, GX eagle cassette, and a Deity Copperhead stem and Blacklabel bar for $3,700.
Complete. Meaning not a frameset. Most high-end dirt-jump and BMX bikes are sold as frames and built à la carte. Because the alternative is the exception, not the rule, the term “complete” was coined, likely by BMXers, to differentiate the two. It was enough of an exception that last year, Marin, who only offers a few of its “completes” as bare frames, had just one dirt jump bike, and it was a frameset. The Alcatraz is a 6061 alloy single-speed or multi-speed compatible 26-inch hardtail worthy of the custom treatment. But to bring it to the masses, Marin decked it out for 2019 with a sweet but smart build kit. X-fusion’s Slant 34-millimeter stanchion, 100-millimeter travel fork, front and rear Tektro hydraulic brakes, and 29-millimeter inner-width rims stack up this ready-to-shred dirt jump, pump track, or curb cut king for $1,300.